Taff Vale Case

Taff Vale Case

 

a lawsuit in Great Britain initiated in 1901 by the Taff Vale Railway Company against the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants of South Wales, a union that was conducting a strike by railroad workers. In July 1901 the House of Lords, as the highest legal authority, delivered a judgment in favor of the company owners, by which the union was fined £23,000, which was allegedly necessary to cover the losses sustained by the company because of the strike. This decision, which made trade unions financially responsible for strikes, in effect deprived the unions of the right to take part in or manage strikes. The judgment in the case provoked a mass protest movement, under pressure of which Parliament was forced in 1906 to pass a law about industrial disputes that virtually annulled the 1901 verdict.